Title: Path tracking, obstacle avoidance and dead reckoning by an autonomous planetary rover

Authors: D.N. Green, J.Z. Sasiadek

Addresses: Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, K1R 7T1, Canada. ' Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, K1R 7T1, Canada

Abstract: This paper presents a set of algorithms for piloting an autonomous planetary rover along a planned path, performing real-time obstacle avoidance and improving a dead reckoning capability. Path tracking is accomplished using linear regulation (feedback) of position and orientation errors, measured with respect to the planned path trajectory. Obstacle avoidance is performed through the application of the concept of an artificial potential field to data that can be acquired using a scanning rangefinder. Dead reckoning is improved by the algorithmic filtering and fusing of odometry and inertial navigation data streams. Computer simulation is used to illustrate the path-tracking and obstacle-avoidance capabilities, and experimental data is used to show how sensor fusion mitigates the effects of wheel-slippage and integration-error in dead reckoning.

Keywords: autonomous planetary rovers; navigation; dead reckoning; obstacle avoidance; path tracking; sensor fusion.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHVS.1998.054599

International Journal of Heavy Vehicle Systems, 1998 Vol.5 No.1, pp.1 - 24

Available online: 18 Jun 2013 *

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